Oh my God. Really Giant Bomb? I just read this on Kotaku. They're a crappy site with some terrible and idiotic comments. I really thought I wouldn't find this thing here.
Alright fine. Let's look at this.
-YouTube is basically all about advertisements
-A company wants to pay someone for doing a commercial for their product?? Oh serenity now!! Let's just burn them at the stake now.
Let's think about commercials. You never see an actor or anyone during one of those when advertising a product say hey, I'm being paid to tell you about this.
No. They smile, promote the product in a positive manor and get paid. Simple. Good lord, internet. You guys really want any reason to shit on Microsoft this past year. Everyone does advertising!! No one is making these people do this. It's your choice. YouTube and advertising. Don't waste your energy trying to wrestle with the ethics about this.
The FTC updated the rules about this just last year to target things specifically like this. If you do any promotion or advertising it must be disclosed to the public. Period. End of story. You can't hide it behind cloak and daggers and just roll in money anymore. Yes most people online don't even know about the law changes and are getting all uppity based solely on the ethical and moral objections they have, but it doesn't matter. I'll say it again, it's ILLEGAL. It is against United States law. Period.
It further begs the question as to how long this simple ghost promotion bullshit has been happening too.